“Now Moses was faithful in all God’s house as a servant, to testify to the things that were to be spoken later, but Christ is faithful over God’s house as a son. And we are his house if indeed we hold fast our confidence and our boasting in our hope.” (Hebrews 3:5-6)
The original audience of Hebrews was composed primarily of Christians who had converted from Judaism and who held Moses in high esteem. The writer now reminds them that, as great as Moses was, Jesus is infinitely greater. The Lord had indeed given Moses the Law as well as the power and authority to lead the Jews, but Jesus is far greater. He is Almighty God. The reason the writer brings this up is that many in the audience were being tempted to go back to being Jews. They thought this might make life easier for them since they were enduring persecution as Christians from both the Romans and the Jews. The problem was that this meant they were rejecting the sacrifice of Christ as sufficient for their salvation. They wanted go back to trusting in the Law and their own good works for salvation.
There is great danger for those who want to trust in their good works to attain heaven. Like the Israelites who perished in the wilderness, they will suffer the same loss of the promise. Only those who remain in the faith of Christ, who do not fall back into their old ways of living and thinking, who persevere until the end, these alone show themselves to be true believers. This does not mean that they earn their salvation by their perseverance, suffering, good works or law-keeping. Rather their salvation is demonstrated by their perseverance and by such deeds of faithfulness and righteousness as these are produced only by the power of the Lord. He works through the Holy Spirit and through the church as well. We need the body of Christ, our fellow believers to encourage us in our struggles and to hold us accountable for our actions. Together we choose daily to walk in obedience to the Lord and to believe that He is able to do all He has promised.